Ministry of Tourism and Arts Permanent Secretary Reverend Howard Sikwela says various chiefdoms will be empowered by the introduction of more than 10 in game ranches this year.

Speaking when he concluded his visit to Mpongwe over the weekend, Rev Sikwela announced that the Ministry will embark on introducing at least 10 game ranches across several chiefdoms this year.

He explained that the initiative was meant to enhance community development in the relevant chiefdoms.

“Tourism and Arts Permanent Secretary PS Reverend Howard Sikwela says his Ministry targets to open more than 10 community game ranches in various chiefdoms this year. The PS said most of the chiefs believed the initiative is good and should have been introduced a long time ago,” read a statement released by Ministry of Tourism and Arts Public Relations Officer Sakabilo Kalembwe, Monday.

Rev Sikwela emphasized the importance of the government under President Edgar Lungu in sensitizing and empowering communities.

“He said there is need to sensitize and empower as many communities as possible and this would be achieved through the government under President Edgar Lungu. Rev. Howard Sikwela said the various benefits would include community development in the chiefdoms. The controlling officer has so far met held a meeting with Mumena Chiefdom in the Kalumbila District of North-Western Province; he visited Shimukunami Chiefdom of Lufwanyama; he visited Lumpuma chiefdom in Lufwanyama, he visited Chiwala Chiefdom in Masaiti and he visited Malembeka Chiefdom in Mpongwe,” read the statement.

“The programme is meant to empower chiefdoms with their own wildlife resources and reduce pressure of demand for special licenses during traditional ceremonies.”